Greg Gibbs is "home-recorder/songwriter from Chicago by way of Roswell, New Mexico." His new CD, The Lights, follows two self-released albums, Raincoat (2007) and Hemoglobin (2009). Gibbs’ music has been featured on National Public Radio, Comedy Central (.com) and he was named Soundcloud’s “Artist of the Day” in February 2011.
The Lights kicks off with "Time Capsule," a long, ambient/electronic intro that gives way to a gentle, weird folk number that recalls the late, great Grandaddy. This is the first of 20 tracks--a lot to take in in one listen, although the rewards are plentiful.
"I Don't Mind" is super catchy and a bit sad, like early Elliott Smith to this reviewer's ears. "Most Guitars are Made of Trees" features (yes) gentle, acoustic guitar and makes the connection between the human player and the instrument as a one-time living thing. "Campus Raygun," the standout track on The Lights, has new wave keyboards, mile-wide hooks and an abrupt ending. The title track (aka "Gryllidaen Rights") flirts a bit with delta blues and album closer "The Nibbler" might just be Gibbs' most soulful vocal on the whole record.
The Lights will likely be an introduction to Gibbs for most listeners. He keeps a pretty low profile in Chicago, making him something of a gem to discover.